Musoma — Deaths caused by malaria have dropped from 560 in 2014 to a record 59 people this year (by September) in Musoma Municipal Council, authorities say.
The Musoma district commissioner, Dr Vicent Naano, said in an interview with The Citizen that the drop in malaria deaths was attributed to the government's efforts to contain the disease.
Out of the 60,341 people, who were diagnosed with malaria in the municipal council in 2014, at least 560 people died of malaria.
Dr Naano said the deaths went down to 115 in 2015 out of the 53,973 people diagnosed with the disease. However, in 2016, the number dropped further to 87 out of the 36,948 people, who had malaria.
From January to September this year, there were 14,594 cases of malaria in the municipal council, but only 59 of the patients died of the disease.
In total, out of the 165,856 malaria patients in Musoma Municipal Council, 821 have died in four years.
The government has partnered with other institutions in a spirited campaign against the disease. As part of the efforts, treated bed nets have been freely distributed in Musoma District, especially in primary schools.
"We have handed out 28,000 mosquito nets to students in all 52 schools in Musoma Municipal Council, aiming at reducing deaths caused by malaria to less than 10 by June 2018," revealed the district commissioner.
He said the campaign against malaria started in August 2016 and by September 2017, the district had reached to 12,000 pregnant women in the distribution of nets, hence increasing access to 40,000 nets.
Musoma Municipal Council has 21 dispensaries, five health centres and 134,300 people, according the 2012 Population and House Census.
A resident of Musoma, Ms Zainab Mohamed, asked the government to take action on people, who used mosquito nets for other purposes, such as for fencing, contrary to what they were intended for.